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Research Assistant at the Centre for Developmental Neurobiology

King's College London - Developmental Neurobiology - IoPPN

Location: London
Salary: £37,332 to £42,099 per annum, including London Weighting Allowance.
Hours: Full Time
Contract Type: Fixed-Term/Contract
Placed On: 29th February 2024
Closes: 14th March 2024
Job Ref: 084935
 
Job description

We are seeking a highly motivated Research Assistant (RA) to join a Wellcome Early Career Award-funded project focusing on RNA dysregulation in autism spectrum disorders (ASD). The work will be performed in Dr. Laura Andreae’s lab under the guidance of Dr. Flora Lee at the Centre of Developmental Neurobiology, King’s College London. The Centre for Developmental Neurobiology and MRC Centre for Neurodevelopmental Disorders are world-leading centres in the field of developmental neuroscience and brain disorders, situated in central London.    

The post holder will support experimental work towards advancing our understanding of disturbed synaptic RNA localization and local translation in neuronal models of ASD risk gene haploinsufficiency. Key responsibilities including:  

  • Conducting experimental work to identify mechanisms underlying synaptic RNA abnormalities. 
  • Performing primary neuronal cultures, immunolabeling, and confocal imaging of synapse phenotypes. 
  • Contribute to transcriptomic sequencing analyses to decipher regulatory signatures and molecular pathways. 

Candidates should have a degree in biological sciences or similar and previous work experience in a research laboratory. Interest in interdisciplinary research across RNA biology and neurobiology, clear oral and written communication skills, desire to learn new techniques, good time-management and accurate record keeping in a dynamic environment are essential. Knowledge of basic molecular biology is essential. Experience in mouse primary neuronal cell culture is desirable. Prior experience in omics analysis, sequencing and/or RNA-protein biochemistry is desirable.  

This post will be offered on a full-time, fixed term contract for 12 months.

Key responsibilities
  • Undertake planned experiments and analyse data under the supervision of Dr. Flora Lee and Dr. Laura Andreae   
  • Maintenance of primary neuronal cultures  
  • Immunolabeling, confocal imaging and quantitative analyses of synapse phenotypes. 
  • Preparation of sequencing libraries using in-house protocols for Illumina sequencing and long-read nanopore sequencing 
  • Conducting transcriptomic analyses to decipher regulatory signatures and molecular pathways. 
  • Maintain an up-to-date record of protocols and analysis pipelines to ensure experiments and analyses are reproducible. 
  • Contribute to the dissemination of research findings. 

The above list of responsibilities may not be exhaustive, and the post holder will be required to undertake such tasks and responsibilities as may reasonably be expected within the scope and grading of the post.  

Skills, knowledge, and experience 

Essential criteria  

  1. A degree in biological sciences or a related field.
  2. Previous experience working in a research laboratory.
  3. Strong interest in interdisciplinary research across neurobiology and RNA biology.
  4. Excellent oral and written communication skills.
  5. Eagerness to learn new techniques.
  6. Ability to work in a dynamic and collaborative environment with excellent time-management and organization.
  7. Accurate record-keeping and attention to detail.
  8. Knowledge of basic molecular biology  

Desirable criteria

  1. Experience with cell culture, in particular mouse primary neuronal cultures.
  2. Experience with Illumina and long-read sequencing or omics analysis.
  3. Experience with protein/RNA biochemistry.
  4. Experience with quantitative statistical analysis of large datasets.
  5. Experience with confocal imaging or similar and use of imaging analysis software.

Closing date: 14th March 2024

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